Processor Magazine - Workforce Personas: Enhance Your Ability To Provide Tailored IT Services


(23-Apr-10)  For marketing professionals and software designers, workforce personas have long served as useful constructs for tailoring advertising campaigns or application features to specific demographics or users. In this context, personas are merely idealized or stereotypical consumers with a set of needs, preferences, and behaviors that help designers refine and prioritize product features. What distinguishes personas from so-called user archetypes is the endowment of a personality, individual narrative, and even name, all of which combine to make personas useful mnemonics when doing user segmentation.

Workforce personas, a term coined by Forrester Research analyst Ted Schadler, are merely the application of these personalized user archetypes to IT customer segmentation. By Schadler’s definition, they are “a set of information worker segments brought to life by describing each group as a real person” that become powerful segmentation tools by virtue of the amalgamation of several attributes into a common idealized individual. He feels personas can help shift IT from being a supplier of standardized, one-size-fits-all sets of applications and services to one offering a menu of supported offerings tailored to different user populations.

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